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tv   [untitled]    March 12, 2015 10:30am-11:01am EDT

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not-for-profit institution he should allow the nonprofit institution non-mandatory arbitration clauses for students. he certainly said the right things. he told me that ecmc "had eliminated corinthian's policies of binding mandatory arbitration arbitration." the reason this is important is that if a student has been defrauded and think sign one of these mandatory arbitration clauses, they can never get their case and their facts before an impartial jury or a judge. it's going to be decided in an arbitration hearing instead. mr. hahn summed up their policy and issue as -- quote -- "bottom line, we believe students have an unquestioned right to seek redress for grievances including a right to file a lawsuit. we will not stand in the way of any student who wants to pursue litigation based on his or her personal experiences." couldn't have been stated more clearly and better. it meant that this debt
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collection company that is taking over the failing for-profit school is saying that we are truly not for profit and we are truly going to play this on the square. and if students feel they have been treated unfairly, they have every legal right to go to court so they don't end up with tens of thousands of dollars of debt because we defrauded them. i felt pretty good about that response. then we read the fine print. we found out em -- ecmc requires students to irrevocably waive their right to seek trial by jury and any class action lawsuit against the school. that isn't what mr. hahn told me was going to happen. in other words students who were wronged by ecmc have to challenge the school loan, stand by themselves and can't make their case in front of a jury.
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then their carrots ecmc enrollment agreement does everything it can to steer students into arbitration. they offer to pay half the cost of a student's filing fee for arbitration if and only if the student waives the right to arbitration decision to court or bring a lawsuit disens the school. if a student demonstrates hardship because a student is saddled with enormous student loan debt and no job ecmc will to have pay the entire arbitration filing fee but only if the student will forfeit the right to bring a lawsuit and the arbitrator's decision becomes binding. i see my colleague on the floor. iem wrap up here. meanwhile corinthian executives seem to be off the hook. they faded into obscurity. they took millions of dollars in federal subsidies. they lured students into worthless schools. the students ended up with the
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debt and the worthless dip ploam mass. they -- diplomas. they falsified their activity to the federal government and went bankrupt they took their million-dollar salaries and faded away. what's left behind? how about all the students with all the debt for the worthless courses at the worthless school. that's the reality of the for-profit college industry and corinthian is exhibit a. it doesn't appear there was any prosecution of these individuals who ran corinthian into the ditch is likely. they've literally taken their money and thesh off to some -- and they're off to some other pursuits. maybe they're looking for some new federal subsidy that can make them rich. but the former students are left with worthless educations and more debt than they can repay. students like dhawn thompson from illinois. she has a paralegal degree in effort and part of corinthian.
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never ever could find a job in her field. over $100,000 in student loan debt to become a paralegal. how about that? federal and private loans. she's working a minimum wage job now as a bank teller. she tried to file for bankruptcy a couple years ago and you guessed it. student loan debt is not dischargeable in bankruptcy. dawn it's with you for your lifetime. it's one of the few debts that isn't dischargeable. dawn thompson thought her only option was to go back to school, and it turns out the only school that would accept her credits was everest the original school she went to. she thought maybe a masters degree from everest would make a difference. it did. her student loan debt went from $100,000 to $170,000. she is still struggling to find a job. how can we stand by and let this happen? how can the federal government recognize these as real schools? how can we allow students to be
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misled into believing these are real colleges and universities? how can we continue to give these outrageous scandalous subsidies to these worthless companies where the c.e.o.'s are taking out millions of dollars? it's time for us to do something about this. shame on us if we sit here and make speeches about how bad the deficit is and how much we care about struggling students and ignore the obvious. for-profit colleges and universities as an industry is basically an industry that needs to be thoroughly investigated, carefully monitored and most of their players need to go out of business not at the expense of the students. 10% of the students, 20% of the federal aid to education 46% of student loan defaults from for-profit colleges and universities. it is time for the senate when it reauthorizes the higher education act to change this. mr. president, i yield the floor.
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the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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ms. heitkamp: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from north dakota. ms. heitkamp: i'd ask that the quorum call be vitiated. the presiding officer: without objection. ms. heitkamp: mr. president i come to the floor today to talk about what i believe may be one of the most critical pieces of legislation to address human trafficking in the united states and that piece of legislation is senator leahy's runaway and homeless youth and trafficking prevention act. i am proud to be a cosponsor of this legislation and to add my name to senator leahy's amendment that he introduced yesterday that adds this important piece of legislation to this current debate.
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senator leahy as we all know, has been a tireless advocate for homeless and runaway youth and for lgbt individuals and victims of human trafficking. and his bill would provide the necessary services and additional protections for all of these young children. so thank you again senator leahy, for your continued work on behalf of some of our most vulnerable our runaway and homeless youth. as a former attorney general i certainly believe that additional fools -- additional tools be made available to prosecutors so that they can prosecute traffickers and johns and we need to intervene and provide recovery services for victims. i think that need has never been greater. but why i am speaking today on this legislation is because it goes to that critical element which is prevention.
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it supports those who are most susceptible for human trafficking, and that is our runaway and homeless youth. preventing one of the most vulnerable segments of our population from falling prey to this modern-day slavery should be one of the top priorities of this nation. where we talk about trafficking frequently people think these are young girls who may be coming into our country in containers or trafficked. but we know that over 80% of the people trafficked, especially in the sex trade in this country are trafficked -- are citizens of our country. they are our children. they are american children. and so, we cannot simply put a face on this that doesn't recognize that american children are being trafficked. and who among them is most vulnerable?
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i will tell you it is runaway and homeless youth. and so it is our responsibility to do everything we can to prevent those children from being in a place where they are extraordinarily vulnerable. now we've heard some people say that they don't believe that homeless and runaway youth are more susceptible to being trafficked and that we shouldn't single out special services for lgtb youth. i can tell you that i don't believe that and i know better because i've been to facilities that provide services for run away and homeless youth and i don't believe people who say this have ever spoken to the social workers and the professionals who deal with these children every day. i don't believe people who say that understand that runaway and homeless youth unfortunately have been more than likely
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already sexual lip and physical -- sexually and physically abuse and told every day they're worthless and because of who they are they are no longer welcome in their home. let me tell you when you diminish the spirit of a child you then create a vulnerability in that child to being a target for traffickers. you know, a lot of people also think this is just a big-city problem. well let me tell you some of the stories of north dakota. just last june a 13-year-old runaway from minneapolis was rescued and her traffickers were arrested in fargo morehead. police believe that the traffickers were more than likely on their way out to our oil patch with the victim, and they stopped over in fargo morehead to make a little cash by selling these children in the area. this is a story we hear over and over again the vulnerability of children, the trafficking of
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children into the oil patch in western north dakota. in fact, talking to the experts who track advertising of young children whether it is in the deep or dark net or whether it is in things like back pages what they will tell you is the spike up in trafficking and ads in western north dakota alarms them and should alarm us. this is not a big city problem. we know this is a problem that affects north dakota. if traffickers are willing to snatch runaways in the big cities and bring them out to north dakota you know they are trying to prey on this vulnerable population in north dakota as well. this is personal for me. i know a lot about this topic because my sister works in this area and i spend a lot of time in her staff and they are the largest agency serving runaway
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and homeless youth populations in fargo-moorhead. i've heard about how the trafficking victim they have already worked with, i've heard them tell stories of how they recruit these kids and sometimes they're bold enough to try and cycle through waiting rooms waiting for these kids. i've heard the stories of guys waiting just down the block or in parking lots of shelters to snatch up these kids. and also i've heard stories of how once a young child is in this how they then become recruiters of other young runaway children. these stories are why it is so imperative to take action and we can take action here in the united states senate. we can take action by taking up partisan runaway and homeless youth prevention act. this bill provides short-term shelter for youth who do not have a place to sleep. imagine that, youth our
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children, do not have a place to sleep. crisis interventions and referrals to youth on the street and at drop-in centers a hand up will take, will help you will help you recover from whatever has happened in your life. a long-term residential services, training and education and employment support to help get these kids off the street and permanently provide a safe and secure path forward. an this bill makes sure that lgbt runaway and homeless youth are not discriminated against when this comes to providing resources and services. you know, you can have an opinion about this, but we all know that no human should be subjected to those kinds of conditions and we must do everything that we can to help them seek the same -- seek and receive the same services as any other child. by ensuring that runaway and homeless youth have a safe place to stay and the resources they
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need, we can stem the tide of human trafficking in our country. by identifying vulnerable youth early and as effectively as possible, we can reduce the number of child sex trafficking victims by preventing them from becoming victims in the first place. we can and we must do everything in our power to not only prosecute, to identify, prosecute, and help victims recover; we must do everything we can to prevent human trafficking. and we can take a huge step forward on that by focusing attention and resources on our runaway and homeless youth population. thank you mr. president. and i note the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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quorum call:


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